The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published its 2023 Annual Service Commitment Review on March 21, 2023. The OSC has updated its service standards and returned to pre-extension 2021 service timelines and targets for reviewing prospectus filings and applications for exemptive relief (excluding exemptions from recognition applications for market infrastructure entities). All service standard changes are effective April 1, 2023, except changes to prospectus-related standards which came into effect earlier on January 9, 2023.

Many of the 2023 updates detail changes to timelines relating to prospectus filings, where the working day standards have generally been reduced (along with certain review percentage targets). With respect to registrants, it is notable that no changes have been made to the extended timelines for new registration submissions for entities or individuals. With respect to acknowledgements for a filed Notice of End of Individual Registration or Permitted Individual Status, the OSC aims to respond within 24 hours of receipt, for routine filings. For registered firms selected for a compliance review, findings are intended to be communicated within 14 weeks of the initial meeting (80% of the time, excluding sweeps), which is an increase from the previous 12 week service standard. The OSC’s performance results against these standards can be found on its website.

It is noted in the statement that staff time spent on a review depends on the quality and effectiveness of a firm’s compliance program, as well as the availability of key personnel and prompt responses to staff requests for information. It is further noted that staff will provide regular touchpoints to advise of progress at a minimum of every two weeks. If you require any assistance getting ready for a compliance review, please contact your usual lawyer at AUM Law.

March 31, 2023